Okay, people, it’s time to clear this up. What the eff is “New Age ” anyway? Chanting om all day? Wearing patchouli and letting your armpits go European? Yoga? Crystals? Tantric sex?
New Age is the catchall term some fuckwad started applying to the idea that Old = Bad and New = Good, sometime around the Harmonic Convergence. Remember that? That was the day in 1987 when we were all going to get aligned and shit and life was going to be awesome afterward. Seems like somebody forgot about some of the un-awesome stuff that’s happened since then, like George W. Bush and orange alerts.
(Apologies, by the way, to the before-his-time William Blake, who applied the term “New Age” in the preface to a long-ass poem about John Milton, in which Milton battles Satan and Blake merges with a twelve-year old girl who’s really him. Awesome stuff. But Blake’s New Age didn’t have patchouli’d armpits in it.)
Old = Bad
Dogmatic religions, for example. They’re definitely bad. New Age devotees shun religion like it’s raw liver left out on a hot sidewalk (which used to be a part of many ritual ceremonies, but that’s beside the point), preferring to replace their Catholic rosary with a Buddhist mala.
(Hint: those are both prayer beads.)
See? Old is bad. New is good. Repeat after me.
Some old religions are allowed. Buddhism is a must, because it’s way cool and hip. Also Buddhism is often confused with vegetarianism, which is favored by New Agers who hate eating anything with a face.
Hinduism presents more of a problem for most New Agers. While it scores points for vegetarianism (good), it had a lot of gods, which is confusing (bad). New Agers like the idea in concept of multiple gods (some with lots of arms! some are animals! they have sex!) which is a big fuck-you to the Big White Dude in the sky with a long white beard and a long white robe, but the whole thing gets tiring after a while (bad). New Agers can’t tell one god from another, except that one is an elephant and one is a monkey. Aside from them, the gods sound to New Agers like a big feuding family who all has sex with one another, and that just hits too close to home.
Speaking of everyone in the family having sex with one another, New Agers also don’t like the idea of multiple spouses as in some fundamentalist religions like extreme Mormonism and Islam. Ew! They say, How positively medieval! Yet, call it polyamory and everybody’s okay with it — it even gets its own HBO show.
New = Good
New, like crystals. You know, rocks? That have been in the ground for centuries? Yeah. Those are new. Nobody ever thought to pick one up before the Harmonic Convergence, when we all wore quartz crystals on our foreheads to raise our vibration.
New also means yoga, preferably in a hot sweaty room. Like before there was air conditioning. See, new!
New also means music, preferably using instruments that have been around for thousands of years. Drums and flutes. (The electronic barfplosion that was New Age music in the 1980′s doesn’t count.)
Oh come off it, who am I kidding? There’s nothing new. It’s really about getting back to what’s old-old. Old = Bad but Really Fucking Old = Good. See?
1. Tree worshiping. Or hugging. Same thing.
2. Sustainable living. Didn’t ALL living used to be sustainable? Because if it wasn’t sustainable, you just starved?
3. Astrology. Cuz the stars and stuff have only been around a few gazillion years or whatever.
4. Vegetarians, vegans, and fasting. In the old-old days, if you had meat you ate it. if not you didn’t. If you didn’t have food you fasted. Simple, eh? How spiritual.
5. Worshiping the feminine. As if pole-dancing wasn’t evidence of this?
And the granddaddy of them all:
Book sales and workshops. Because where would we be if we didn’t have people telling us where to go?
There you have it. The Bitch’s Guide to the New Age. You’re welcome. Now go grow out your patchouli pits.